Cleaning Stainless Steel Appliances

Keeping your stainless steel sparkling and streak free can be a challenge. This guide is about cleaning stainless steel appliances.
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13 found this helpful
September 6, 2012 Flag

Use Windex and coffee filters. The fibers in the coffee filters help get handprints and other things off stainless steel much better than a paper towel and dries clean without leaving smudges.

By Debbie N from Tacoma, WA

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November 1, 2015 Flag

Mix 1/4 cup vinegar, 2 tbsp baking soda, and 1/8 cup hydrogen peroxide. Add 4-6 cups hot water. Use a clean cloth. Dip cloth in solution and wring out, leaving cloth a little sloppy. Wipe down stainless steel with cloth. Allow to sit a minute. Wipe down with a dry cloth. Then wipe with a microfiber cloth. Very shiny! This solution also works to mop linoleum and tile floors and to clean the bathroom!

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November 3, 20150 found this helpful
Top Comment

If this mixture works for you, I say great. I doubt it would work for most people. First, the vinegar and soda would neutralize each other, making them ineffective as cleaning agents. You might as well leave them out. Second,  cup hydrogen peroxide diluted in 4-6 cups water would have very little, if any, cleaning action. Couple that with the fact that H2O2 is very unstable in heat, the hot water would further reduce any cleaning action it may have had. So you can leave it out, too.

That leaves you with hot water. You could add vinegar. It is a good cleaning agent. Or, you could add soda, it too is a good cleaning agent. My favorite is clear, non sudsing household ammonia. The best, cheapest grease cutter on the planet. Yes, it has a strong scent. Use common sense and use it with adequate ventilation.

The water on the cleaned surface will evaporate. Ammonia is a gas. Any residue will evaporate into the air. That leaves your surface with no residue at all. Nothing to rinse.

You could mix ammonia and peroxide in warm water. Each will increase the effectiveness of the other. This is the base for bleaching hair. Be sure to use this mixture only on surfaces unaffected by its bleaching action.

Bathroom floors? Where pathogens can be an issue, I use straight 10 volume peroxide. I squirt it from a bottle, spread across the floor, leave it for an hour or so, then mop up and rinse.

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12 found this helpful
May 5, 2009 Flag

For 3 years I have been struggling to keep my stainless steel appliances clean. They always have drip marks and finger prints on them. Finally, I found the perfect solution and it is something almost everyone has in their home.

First clean the surface with warm soapy water and rinse. Yes, I know, you're going to see a lot of streaks. But, then spray WD-40 on a soft, lint-free cloth (I used an old t-shirt) and wipe over the stainless steel surface. Just a tiny bit will do it.

A very thin layer of WD-40 will really shine your appliances up and keep them smudge free for a long time. If finger prints or smudges do show up, just a dry soft cloth will erase them instantly. What a time saver this has been! Try it for yourself.

Related Content(article continues below)

Source: I found this tip online after a very frustrating, and unsuccessful cleaning attempt.

By antiquefreeque from WI

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November 15, 2016 Flag

Take an empty spray bottle and fill it with half baby oil and half food-grade mineral oil. Spray on a cloth and apply in circular motion. Take another cloth and buff. This leaves a beautiful shine and lasts a while. It is much cheaper than any store-bought brand.

stainless steel dishwasher

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December 9, 2016 Flag

This is a guide about removing water marks from stainless steel dishwasher front. While durable, stainless steel does have the disadvantage of showing water marks.

Cleaning a stainless steel dishwasher.

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3 found this helpful
March 14, 2016 Flag

The best way to clean stainless steel refrigerator doors and silver jewelry is toothpaste! Any brand will do, but it has to be the white paste. Use just a little, then wipe clean with Windex.

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2 found this helpful
June 10, 2009 Flag

After cleaning your stainless steel, smear on some baby oil with a dry cloth. The stains will be easier to remove in future.

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May 11, 2012 Flag

An easy way to clean and polish stainless steel appliances is with vegetable oil and a rag. Dampen the rag with some vegetable oil, wipe down the appliance and it will shine like new.

Polishing stainless steel with vegetable oil.

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1 found this helpful
April 21, 2009 Flag

To clean smudge marks off stainless steel appliances, make a paste of baking soda and water. Rub over the spots. Then wipe the appliance down with plain water, and dry.

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February 18, 2013 Flag

We have a smallish kitchen and stainless appliances. I've found my best solution is to use Awesome (at most dollar stores). I spray it, one door at a time, and use old towels or t-shirts to get some scrubbing ability.

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Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

0 found this helpful
January 5, 2017 Flag

How do I get water spots off of stainless steel?

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January 8, 20170 found this helpful

There are several ways to clean stainless steel that should work on your tea kettle.

Maybe one of them will work for you:

1. Gather a one medium size towel and one hand towel; lay by sink. Place tea kettle in sink; heat a pot of plain water to very hot and pour hot water over tea kettle.

Immediately dry with larger towel and finish off with smaller towel. This will many times remove spots and leave surface very shiny.

2. Add enough white vinegar to three tablespoons of baking soda to form a thick paste. Apply it with a soft rag or sponge and scrub until the stains disappear, then wipe the kettle with a damp cloth. Barkeepers Friend can be used instead as it does not leave scratch marks either.

3. Place a small amount of mineral oil on a cloth and wipe surface. Use warm soap and water to remove mineral oil but dry immediately with a soft cloth.

4. I have heard of using Windex but I cannot vouch for this.

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0 found this helpful
January 17, 2016 Flag

I never removed the blue film from the front of my new stainless steel dishwasher. I was trying to keep it clean! I started to remove it today and it has glued itself to the stainless steel. I am very slowly pulling little pieces away, but this might take weeks.
Has this happened to anyone else? How might you proceed to remove the blue film without scratching or ruining the stainless front panel? Advice welcome.

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Anonymous Flag
June 3, 20160 found this helpful

Hair dryer!!!

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0 found this helpful
March 26, 2015 Flag

We recently had a house fire and my stainless steel back splash and vent-a-hood have a dull, film on them. The cleaning people used industrial cleaner and stainless steel cleaner and it's still dull with no shine. I have recleaned both myself to no avail. Any suggestions on how to get this cleaned would be appreciated. Thanks.

By Jules J

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March 28, 20150 found this helpful

I clean my stainless steel with isopropil alcohol and it works great!

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July 12, 2011 Flag

I am wanting to find a way to clean the top and outside of my stainless steel gas stove. I have tried soapy water like the instructions say or just a wet wash cloth, but it always leaves water spots or smudges. Please help me. Thanks.

By Alecia

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July 14, 20110 found this helpful

The resturants I worked at used oil. Very little on a rag or towel will shine it up perfectly and cleans it at the same time.

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July 27, 2016 Flag

We recently had a house fire and my stainless steel dishwasher has a dull, film on it. The cleaning people used industrial cleaner and stainless steel cleaner and it's still dull with no shine. I have reclined it myself to no avail. What can I do?

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0 found this helpful
March 10, 2013 Flag

Can anyone help on how to clean fingerprints off of a stainless steal appliance?

By Janet K.

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March 11, 20130 found this helpful

Put some vegetable oil on a paper towel and wipe it down. It will gleam.

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December 6, 2013 Flag

What is the best way to clean around burners on a stainless gas range?

By Carol

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March 26, 20140 found this helpful

You can use vinegar solution for it. Just take normal hot water and mix 1/4 vinegar solution in it than pour it on dirt place and wipe with soft cloth.

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3 found this helpful
April 8, 2011 Flag

I have a lot of buildup of stainless steel appliance cleaner. My frig doors are all smudged with build up. If I use the stainless cleaning pads I bought at the store, it looks good for a few hours, then it gets even more smudged with build up. Can anyone help me? I'm at my wits end!

By Julie from Medford, NJ

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April 10, 20110 found this helpful

Use a solution of warm water, vinegar, a few drops of plain dish soap. (no soap with added oils & lotions). Use a soft, lint free cloth to rinse all the grime & buildup off. Once you manage to get all the grime off I recommend one of two products. The easiest is a window cleaner called SprayAway. Simply spray on and buff off with a clean lint free cloth. I regularly use this method at my clients' houses on their stainless steel appliances & it is amazing. No residue or streaks and it leaves a great shine. The other product I would suggest is Wright's Silver Polishing Cream. A little goes a long way, but your steel will blind you when all is said and done! :)

I don't recommend using most of the SS wipes and cleaners that have become so abundant these days. Most simply create a build up like the situation you have now. Hope this helps!

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June 2, 2012 Flag

I work for a cleaning company and we use Elco stainless steel cleaner. A lot of our stainless steel fridges, dishwashers, and ovens are getting a greasy (sticky like) buildup. When we try to buff out smudges, it only gets worse. We do not know what to do? We need help getting the residue buildup off and then what would be good to use? Please help.

By Cricket

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Anonymous Flag
June 2, 20120 found this helpful

A good grease remover is Lestoil (good luck, finding that in your grocery store nowadays). Another is ammonia. If you can get commercial grade it is more cost effective and it lasts much longer because it is so strong. Be careful with it; the fumes are overwhelming, and you should dilute it. Be sure the windows are open while you use it. And wear protective gloves, with either of these.

Also, don't use synthetic cloth to clean the stainless steel with either of these products. Use only clean cotton material that has NOT been rinsed with fabric softener. Or use paper towels (but that is so UN-Thrifty).

Your stainless steel will gleam after a wash down with either of these.

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0 found this helpful
September 13, 2010 Flag

A harsh cleaner was used on some stainless steel appliances. It looks like it stripped away the surface. I am not sure if it was a clearcoat of some type. Please help! How can I restore the luster and shine to the front of the appliances?
Thanks.

By Kim from Sacramento, CA

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September 21, 20100 found this helpful

My mother splashed Drano on her stainless steel coffee maker and it has left a terrible stain. I don't think that this can be polished off. What was the harsh cleaner that was used on your appliances? That might make a difference. If you find out how to bring back the shine to your appliances, perhaps I could do the same for the coffeemaker.

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3 found this helpful
April 22, 2010 Flag

Is it safe to use vinegar to clean hard water stains in a washing machine with a stainless steel tub? If so, do I use full strength or dilute?

By JJ from The Woodlands, TX

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April 23, 20100 found this helpful

Vinegar should do the trick. If vinegar doesn't harm your hands, it is not going to harm the stainless steel. It should dissolve the hard water stains.

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0 found this helpful
September 25, 2012 Flag

I have dishwasher liquid stains on a stainless steel stove top. How can I remove them?

By Carol D from Muscat, Oman

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0 found this helpful
March 31, 2012 Flag

I have dark discoloration stains from spills around my burners on my stove. Can anyone tell me what to use to remove them?

By Beverly

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0 found this helpful
November 6, 2011 Flag

The gel dishwasher soap has made marks on the stainless steel front panel. How can I get the marks out?

By Bonnie from Valparaiso, IN

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1 found this helpful
November 11, 2009 Flag

How do I clean stainless steel appliances?

By tapa1525@aol.com from FL

Answers:

Cleaning Stainless Steel Appliances

There are many products you could use. I use stainless steel cleaner in an aerosol can available most anywhere. Other people have used other products with good results such as pledge (06/18/2009)

By foxrun41

Cleaning Stainless Steel Appliances

You don't need any cleaner at all. Get a microfiber cloth-ring it in hot water. Wipe your appliances down. Do the same for window really works. (06/18/2009)

By bdon1

Cleaning Stainless Steel Appliances

I completely agree with those who suggested microfiber cloths - they are miraculous. With only water, you can clean stainless steel, glass, mirrors, countertops, TV and computer screens, even painted surfaces. You can buy a large package of them in the auto department of Wal Mart or at an auto supply store - much cheaper than the ones in the linen dept. (06/19/2009)

By Southern Saver

Cleaning Stainless Steel Appliances

Just scrolled through reading all of the suggestions. My appliances her covered with water spots, fingerprints (two small children are so hard on stainless steel) and some very light surface rust (very annoying for appliances that are only a few years old.)

Until now we have always used the stainless steel cleaning spray- It hasn't worked very well.

Anyway, the only thing I had on hand was the baking soda. With a toothbrush, I scrubbed the surface of my stainless steel appliances (testing a small area first), rinsed with a warm wet rag, and then dried with a clean soft cloth. It was a laborious task but the results were amazing.

The rust, the water spots, the fingerprints, everything is gone and my appliances look like they did the day we put them in!

Well worth the time invested!

(08/28/2009)

By Blackandy

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